“Date Lab” Shows Its True Colors

It’s time for some weekend trivia. Every week the Washington Post gives some money to a couple of readers who use it to go on a date. In the latest edition of this merrymaking, the young couple (ages 25 and 30) spent more than the Post had given them. Rich Juzwiak describes what happened:

In my short time writing Date Lab, I’ve now heard multiple accounts of well-meaning gestures of caretaking on the part of men that went over about as well as if they had kept inserting “actually” in a conversation about feminism. But in the case of James Carty, he unknowingly erred too far on the side of under-chivalrous, rather than over-chivalrous.

….[Jade] hadn’t counted James out completely until their check came and it ran $70 over the amount The Washington Post had agreed to cover. Jade said James suggested that they split it, which cooled her on him even further. “As much as women’s equality is a thing now, and whatever, I do think that chivalry is not dead and should not be,” Jade said. “When a guy offers to pay … it shows a sign of, ‘I’m interested in you and I want to keep this going.’ ”

Why does the Date Lab writer describe this as James making a mistake? At most, it’s a difference of opinion with no mistakes involved. For my money, though, any 25-year-old who says that women’s equality “is a thing now, and whatever” is probably the one who’s a little out of touch with contemporary norms.

Anyway, it’s a bad idea for people with similar first names to get involved with each other. This was never destined to work out.


The more we thought about how MoJo's journalism can have the most impact heading into the 2020 election, the more we realized that so many of today's stories come down to corruption: democracy and the rule of law being undermined by the wealthy and powerful for their own gain.

So we're launching a new Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption. We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We'll publish what we find as a major series in the summer of 2020, including a special issue of our magazine, a dedicated online portal, and video and podcast series so it doesn't get lost in the daily deluge of breaking news.

It's unlike anything we've done before and we've got seed funding to get started, but we're asking readers to help crowdfund this new beat with an additional $500,000 so we can go even bigger. You can read why we're taking this approach and what we want to accomplish in "Corruption Isn't Just Another Scandal. It's the Rot Beneath All of Them," and if you like how it sounds, please help fund it with a tax-deductible donation today.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.